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Painting the Nursery

I am waiting for the ultimate surprise. In t-minus 9 weeks, the gender of Baby T will be revealed! Strangely, a lot of prep work seems to be contingent on old, traditional norms. Pottery Barn, OshKosh B’gosh, Carter’s, Old Navy and other big brands are convinced that “male means blue” and “female means pink.” The birthing industrial complex kindly suggests green, yellow and grey as unisex hues. Onesies, house paint, socks, and animal-themed toys (lions are on “boy teethers” / birds are on “girl swaddlers”) are all codependent on antiquated tropes. Some of the clothes even seem overtly sexist, “Mommy’s littler helper” and “Daddy’s princess.” Sigh.

That said, a few brands get the aesthetically pleasing, gender-neutral baby fashion (and lifestyle) items right without all of the saccharine, cutesie details: Boden, Giggle, Sprout, Tea CollectionBurt’s Bees Baby, KicKee Pants, SkipHop, René Rofé Baby, and hundreds of independent brands found online and via Etsy.

Now that my nesting instinct has kicked in at (just shy of) 32 weeks, my personal struggle with the “gender wars” came this past weekend. In my desire to check errands off of my (never-ending) list, calm anxieties, or feel superficially prepared for the whirlwind of a newborn, I decided this Saturday was the time to paint. Four of my wonderful friends obliged and were paid in delicious Greek food and major gratitude.

Headed to Lowe’s Home Improvement with nothing but a few dream photographs from Pinterest, I had little idea of what color to choose. Originally, I had wanted a minimal and Scandinavian white. But, my friend Sonja said such a dull color was “unnecessarily punishing the baby with bland” and also, not indicative of the excitement, joy and magical exuberance of a child. Tall order.

Hours later, we chose Valspar’s Mint Hint. I’m told it pairs well with Apple Slice, Lime Sherbet, and Pearly Violet. Considered a blue undertoned neutral, it easily complements grey, wood, and pastel. Step one of our unisex mint nursery is now complete!

Now on to modern yet infant appropriate decor.

A Modern, Gender Neutral Mint Colored Nursery

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P.S. Yours truly, neurotic mom-to-be, promises the room was HIGHLY ventilated – windows and doors were open.
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Decoupaged Frame DIY

Today I bring you a guest post from the uber crafty Lisa Hazell. 
Lisa: I’m so excited to be sharing a fun and simple tutorial with you here at The Walkup Blog today!!  I love all things crafty, especially projects that incorporate vintage paper ephemera!!  My Etsy Shoppe specializes in vintage craft supplies, including a nice assortment of ephemera such as tickets, coupons, tags, labels, and other paper pieces.  Today, I’m going to show you how to make a super fun and easy decoupage project that incorporates these types of vintage items!!
Let’s get started by gathering some supplies…

Supplies Needed:

  • Unfinished Wooden Frame (my frame was $1.00)
  • Acrylic Paints (to match your ephemera)
  • Assorted Paper Ephemera (I prefer vintage)
  • Decoupage Medium (your favorite brand is fine)
  • Foam Brush (a regular brush may work)
  • Craft Knife (I like my X-acto knife)
  • Varnish (I really like the “Satin” finish)
  • Find a color of acrylic paint that matches your ephemera.  I had to mix a few colors together to get just right shade of teal blue.
  • Paint the front of the frame.  Don’t worry about the sides just yet.
  • Let it dry completely.
  • Gather a bunch of ephemera in your color choice, such as tickets, tags, stamps, labels, play money, coupons, etc. You can theme the photo frame based on events you want to remember – like every concert you’ve gone to with a best friend!
  • Decoupage these pieces, one by one, onto the front of your frame, but don’t fold the excess over the sides.
  • Keep adding your ephemera until the entire frame front is covered.
  • Let dry.
  • Using your craft knife, very carefully trim the excess paper off the edges of the frame.
  • Using the same color acrylic paint you used earlier, paint the outside and inside edges of the frame.
  • Two to three coats will completely cover the wood grain, but if you’d like that to show through, only use one coat.
  • Let the paint dry completely before starting the next step.
  • Add at least two coats of varnish to the front and sides of the frame.
  • If bubbles form, just blog on them and they should pop.
  • Be sure to let the varnish dry completely.
  • If your frame didn’t come with a way to hang it, just add a nice ribbon to hang it by.
  • Add your picture, image, or other focal piece to the finished frame.
9.Finished.H
ET VIOLA! TA-DA! BRAVA! HANG THIS VINTAGE-INSPIRED MASTERPIECE IN THE LIVING ROOM! 
Since I know everyone doesn’t have a huge collection of vintage ephemera (tickets, bingo boards, bottle caps, just lying around, here’s a coupon code so you can get 10% your entire order (before S&H) at Lisa’s Craft Shoppe
COUPON CODE: WALKUP10PER
Just click the shoppe button below, add your items to your cart.  When you’re ready to check out, go to your cart, click on “Add shop coupon code” and add the above coupon code to receive your 10% discount!!
Thanks so much, Keren, for having me over today!!  I’ve had such a wonderful time and hope to be back soon!!

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Greetings From…

Before I had a dime to my name, postcards always seemed like an inexpensive way to pay homage to places I had been, artists I have loved, and ideas I wanted to emulate. The small, cardstock templates were often priced 2 for $1.00, and were just as beautiful as prints. I have amassed hundreds of postcards, each serving as a reminder of my past, a small glimpse into an entire world. There were 3 ½” x 5” cards, sent to me, from a friend in Paris. There were 4 ¼” x 6” images I absolutely needed to own from the National Gallery of Art. Want to own a Warhol, Monet or Hirst? Buy a postcard! And yet, what to do with them all….

Postcard Wall Display

Photography by Felix Forest via homelife.

Framed Postcard Display

A DIY Framed Postcard Display via The Harpster Home

Postcard Gallery Wall

The slow diagonal stacking of postcards highlights the funky ceiling of this small bathroom space via Tui Benjamin

Postcard Wall Display

A display of a boxed set of 100 vintage Penguin book cover postcards found on the clearance table at Anthropologie via How About Orange. The obvious theme creates an automatically curated collection. 

Postcard Wall Display

Instead of wallpaper, why not decoupage the entire wall? Want a less labor intensive route? Thumbtacks are always easy via Mr. Kate.

James Merrell / The Walkup

A postcard gallery wall, above a mantel place, fits right into the eclectic decor of this bright living room. Image via Jeams Merrell. 

A Postcard Lampshade

Not a fan of an old lampshade? Rip the fabric away, expose the wiring, and create a postcard carousel! Idea via Almodeus

Postcard Wall Display

Photography Kristiina Kurronen via Susanna Vento.

Postcard Wall Display

An impermanent postcard wall using laundry lines via the Homestead Gallery in London.

Postcard Archway or Doorway Display

 Molding over an archway does double duty as a shelve in which to display favorite snippets from past travels and travails, from Boila.

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